9 Major Factors To Consider When Planning Your African Safari

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9 Major Factors To Consider When Planning Your African Safari


Will you be staying in or near the park? (If you stay well outside the park, you’ll miss the good early morning and evening wildlife-viewing hours.) Are the surroundings atmospheric? Will you be in a large lodge or an intimate private camp?


Mediocre vehicles and equipment can significantly detract from the overall experience. In remote areas, lack of quality equipment or vehicles and appropriate back-up arrangements can be a safety risk.

 Access and activities

If you don’t relish the idea of hours in a 4WD on bumpy roads, consider parks and lodges where you can fly in. Areas offering walking and boat safaris are best for getting out of the vehicle and into the bush.


 A good driver/guide c an make or break your safari. With low-budget operators trying to cut corners, chances are that staff are unfairly paid, and are not likely to be knowledgeable or motivated.

Community commitment

Look for operators that do more than just give lip service to ‘ecotourism’ principles, and that have a genuine, long-standing commitment to the communities where they work. In addition to being more culturally responsible, they’ll also be able to give you a more authentic and enjoyable experience.

Setting the agenda

Some drivers feel that they have to whisk you from one good ‘sighting’ to the next. If you prefer to stay in one strategic place for a while to experience the environment and see what comes by, discuss this with your driver. Going off in wild pursuit of the ‘Big Five’ means you’ll miss the more subtle aspects of your surroundings.


 On the northern circuit, it’s common for drivers to stop at souvenir shops en route. While this gives the driver an often much-needed break from the wheel, most shops pay drivers commissions to bring clients, which means you may find yourself spending more time souvenir shopping than you’d bargained for. Discuss this with your driver at the outset, ideally while still at the operator’s offices.

 Less is more

 If you’ll be teaming up with others to make a group, find out how many people will be in your vehicle, and try to meet your travelling companions before setting off.

Special interests

If birding or other special interests are important, arrange a private safari with a specialized operator. Also, before you choose any package make sure you know your interests or what you would love to experience more on safari, that will help much the operator to choose appropriate parks and guide who will be a perfect match for your desired safari experience. Because the flavor if guides differ from one to another there are some are good in birds, other in plants and other in animals, other in history and other are good in all aspects.